Aditi Mukherjee – GEMS Akademia International School, Kolkata
Ms. Aditi Mukherjee, Principal – GEMS Akademia International School, Kolkata hails from the lineage of an eminent educationist and freedom fighters. She is the granddaughter of the “Tamrapatra” winner. She has been associated with teaching at various levels for quite some years fructifying her childhood ambitions. Through her diverse experiences which also includes a brief six months at Chittagong Grammar School (an International School affiliated to the Round Square Group), she feels that she has been privileged to interact with the student community in its widest range.
She quotes -”Such varied experiences have taught me that the essence of education is not to teach one anything, but to motivate and enable building up the right skill levels, that direct each to his individual excellence.” Leading her students by example she tries to mingle her capabilities with their energies. She firmly believes that it enables her to contribute in her own small way, to the task of nation building while they are readied as true global citizens.
GAIS Objective: “To make real GEMS out of each of our students in the truest sense. We strive every day to instil good values amongst our children and help and guide them to be well-rounded, independent, compassionate, respectful, happy human beings who can take on the world, make positive contribution to society and become global leaders of the future.”Ingenio et Labore” – a Latin phrase meaning ‘by natural ability and hard work’, she mentions that their motto is an accurate reflection of the learning process at GEMS Akademia International. GAIS try to recognise, motivate and respect the natural abilities of the children and help them to nurture those to reach their maximum potential.”
She talks about her typical day at GEMS- It begins by welcoming students and conducting assemblies of both the Primary and Secondary sections. Then it’s time for me to check the daily mails and setting up “good learning day” followed by class observations and answering general queries. During the course of the day, I meet teachers and other staff and tend to appointments that have been scheduled for the day. And there are of course times when I put my thinking cap and delve into – Marketing strategies, Legal and Financial issues, Boarding matters, taking feedback from people- more so importantly from parents and counselling students. It’s generally not regulated, it’s not tabled into a system. It’s about tracking the academic performance of students, laying out future plans with the CEO and stakeholders, assessing teachers, exploring and implementing new ideas with my young, enthusiastic, vibrant team members. That’s how a typical day at GAIS looks like for me.
Discussing about the uniqueness of pedagogy at GAIS she says, GAIS follows activity based learning, where students and teachers actively participate in the learning process. Experiments are conducted to prove scientific formulae and children are asked to write reports on the same to understand how much they have comprehended. Most topics are taught through experiments and age according children centric activities, planned to fit the psyche of the students. Real-life situations and videos are implemented to make learning fun.
She points out, at the Pre-primary and Primary levels, the school believes that home works and assignments everyday make a child lose interest, hence the homework and other tasks are only assigned during the weekends. Assessments are conducted only after the completion of a particular topic and at all level. We try to not let the children feel burdened of handling too much at one go. The teacher along with coordinators frame a child friendly curricula based on the NSF norms and always keeps a cross-curricular link to make the learning process easy.
GAIS follows Cambridge Curriculum
She explained the benefits in detail-The Cambridge International Examination (CIE) curriculum is a flexible curriculum. A child can appear for exam three times in a year as suitable for the child. Children can take exams for any subject of their choice. Above all, it is an International certificate, which opens up doors for education in any part of the world. Cambridge is a 300 years old institution and has recognition throughout the world. After taking a CIE exam, if a student scores really well, they get direct admission in international universities, without the hassle of taking any external examinations. The CIE curriculum is application based. Very less emphasis is given on retention. Its flexibility makes it widely acceptable.
She fondly says, we are just 5 years young and we behave like 5 years old – like a fledging, learning to fly. We experiment, innovate and plant trees and inspire all our students to do the same. We learn, unlearn and relearn and create great things together!
GEMS Akademia International School
Bakrahat Road, Thakurpukur, Kolkata 700104
Contact: 033 2498 – 0671/72